There's no doubt that Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection is an attempt to rekindle interest in the franchise (and score some extra sales) ahead of Uncharted 4's release next year. However, that doesn't mean that Bluepoint Games' PlayStation 4 port of the first three Uncharted games is a simple cash-in. The team at Digital Foundry has conducted a shot-by-shot comparison of the anthology's trailer with the respective moments in the PS3 games, and it's clear that there are many, many little visual upgrades (beyond just the jumps to 1080p and 60 frames per second) that add up to a lot. More detailed objects are everywhere, lighting is more natural and cinematic depth-of-field effects occasionally pop up -- just take a look at Nathan and Sully in the PS4 edition (pictured at left) versus its PS3 counterpart (right). There are even elements that weren't there at all before. The games treat fire and dust differently than they did in the past, and you'll see new details like low-hanging clouds.
Not everything is a step forward. There's a noticeable lack of motion blur, which might rob some action-heavy scenes of their thunder. Even so, it's evident that The Nathan Drake Collection is as much about creating a consistent Uncharted experience as anything else. Bluepoint is sprucing everything up so that you won't feel like you're stepping into a time machine when you play the older titles. Yes, the series won't be exactly how you remembered it, but it beats having to settle for upscaled versions of action-adventures that are starting to show their age.